The Central Regional Minister, Justina Marigold Assan, has complained about the absence of logistics needed for the fight against illegal mining, popularly referred to as ‘galamsey,’ in the region.
According to her, the Central Regional Co-ordinating Council (C-RCC), despite its best efforts, was handicapped in tackling the menace due to the unavailability of much-needed logistics.
She, has therefore, appealed to the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources for logistical support and closer collaboration to “nip in the bud” the practice
The Regional Minister was speaking here, at Cape Coast yesterday, when the Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel Abdulai Jinapor paid a courtesy call on her.
The visit formed part of Mr Jinapor’s two-day tour of the Central Region to obtain first hand information about happenings in the sector, interact with Heads of Regional security apparatus, and meet with Regional chiefs with the view to court their unflinching support in the areas of mining, forestry and lands.
Mrs Assan noted with concern the modus operandi of illegal miners on water bodies including the use of speedboat, describing it as a “national canker.”
The RCC, she said, was more than ready to support the Ministry to tackle the problem saying that the logistics should be provided to conduct effective monitoring on illegal mining and deal with perpetrators.
Currently, the RCC, she added, was engaging with local communities in the region to become the immediate repellant of illegal mining and make them own the fight.
On his part, Mr Jinapor stated that, the government was committed to instilling discipline in the small scale mining sector and ensure viable and sustainable mining of the country’s resources.
He said the government would intensify its measures and strategies to curb the practice, and provide the needed logistics to enable the RCC to undertake regular monitoring of the water bodies.
The government, he noted, would not renege on it responsibility to retool security apparatus who were critical in enforcing mining and environmental protection laws.
Mr Jinapor asked for support and co-operation from the RCC and the Regional Security Council in clamping down on the illegality saying that “we have a huge task and should be ready to work together to achieve the goal.”
FROM CLAUDE NYARKO ADAMS, CAPE COAST